I’ve heard its just laziness, and isn’t everyone sometimes forgetful and distracted?
These are excellent questions. But it turns out that kids (and adults) with ADHD brains think differently, often faster, and covering wide areas of interest not to say distraction.
“Scientists say that 50% of kids are shorter than average” Huh, breaking news, or duh, of course half are shorter than average, just as half are taller than average – Thats what average means. But we’re not talking “below average” kids.
We’re talking about bright, funny, creative kids who struggle when things are hard, but especially when they’re boring, repetitive or seemingly pointless. Other kids can work though stuff even when it isn’t very interesting, just to do well, or because of parents pushing them, or because they have a goal, like university that motivates them to do well.
The ADHD brain needs things exciting and stimulating and especially NOW!
When we do surveys, most people don’t think like ADHD’ers. Most people don’t lose their house keys, and lunch money, and homework more days than not. Most kids want to put off homework, but once they settle down to do it, they want to get it over with as soon as possible, so they can do other things, while the kid with adhd takes 2 – 4 times longer to complete the homework, and makes more mistakes doing it, and still manages to forget to hand it in (after all that effort).
When ordinary people put down their keys or glasses or phone, they notice where they put it, and remember the next day. The kid with ADHD puts down the item without noticing, while thinking about 10 different things, often at high speed and almost at the same time. Why would they remember the next day?
But lots of kids struggle in school – do they all have ADHD? No, there’s many reasons to struggle in school, from stress to intelligence, to personality and temperament versuchen sie diese seite. Only a few have ADHD. Studies all over the world, and repeatedly over the last 100 years show that ADHD exists in about 5% of kids. Despite what you might have read, the numbers aren’t changing, it isn’t due to TV, or computers, or the internet or cell phones. If you are ADHD, those things may not be helping, but they didn’t cause the ADHD, no matter what your Dad says.
When I first realized I needed to learn about adhd, I took a course at Alberta Childrens Hospital. They said that half of all kids with adhd grow out of it by age 15. A few years later, Dr. Hallowell of “Driven To Distraction” fame said the same thing, and the local paediatricians all rolled their eyes. They had learned that what was considered common knowledge was just wrong.
Not only do kids not stop being adhd at 15, they don’t stop on turning 18 or 21 either.
Its common for my adults patients to think and say something along the lines of “isn’t everyone like that” but truth is, no, people without adhd don’t think or act like that.
“Taking Charge Of Adult ADHD” has an appendix with actual percentages of people with and without adhd who have a particular symptom – and the percentages are hugely different.
Partners often don’t understand that something they see as being deliberately difficult is actually just the partner being adhd and not by choice. That understanding can be a huge first step in repairing relationships. Its a lot easier to forgive distractibility than downright deliberate rudeness.
The ADHD brain isn’t just less focused, its differently focused. People with ADHD see things differently, have different priorities and different needs.